Making macaroni and cheese from scratch is almost as easy as the boxed stuff. In fact, I had a reader tell me that she and her husband decided to race against each other – one making homemade mac and cheese and the other making it out of a box – and it took them the same amount of time! And as an added bonus the homemade version tastes SO MUCH better (at least in my opinion). To be honest, I can’t even hardly eat the boxed stuff anymore because the taste of the powdered cheese just doesn’t cut it for me like it did in the old days.
I’ve shared a mac and cheese recipe on the blog before, but recently discovered a different way to make it (below). One night I was actually making Fettuccine Alfredo as a side dish, but I didn’t have any fettuccine on hand so I used macaroni noodles instead. My younger daughter said “Oh mommy, thank you for making macaroni and cheese.” (one of her favorites), and I said “Well, this isn’t exactly ‘macaroni’ babe.” But that gave me an idea. Instead of starting with a roux (butter and flour) to make macaroni maybe I could alter my Alfredo recipe and use less cream and lots more cheese for a new, creamy version of macaroni and cheese. And voila! Here you have it below…
- 1 ½ cups dry whole-wheat macaroni/elbow noodles, cooked according to package directions
- 2 tablespoons butter
- ⅓ cup + 1 tablespoon heavy cream, divided
- 1 ¼ cups freshly grated cheese (mild cheddar, sharp cheddar, Monterey Jack or even better – a combination of different cheeses is highly recommended including a little Parmesan cheese if you have it)
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- Pepper, to taste (this dish is great with pepper on top)
- In the pot you used to boil the noodles, melt the butter over medium-low heat. Stir in the ⅓ cup of cream until well combined.
- Turn the heat down to low and add the noodles, cheese, salt and pepper and cook while stirring until the the cheese melts. Stir in the last tablespoon of cream at the end. Season with black pepper and serve immediately.